Pch2 links chromosome axis remodeling at future crossover sites and crossover distribution during yeast meiosis

PLoS Genet. 2009 Jul;5(7):e1000557. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000557. Epub 2009 Jul 24.


Segregation of homologous chromosomes during meiosis I depends on appropriately positioned crossovers/chiasmata. Crossover assurance ensures at least one crossover per homolog pair, while interference reduces double crossovers. Here, we have investigated the interplay between chromosome axis morphogenesis and non-random crossover placement. We demonstrate that chromosome axes are structurally modified at future crossover sites as indicated by correspondence between crossover designation marker Zip3 and domains enriched for axis ensemble Hop1/Red1. This association is first detected at the zygotene stage, persists until double Holliday junction resolution, and is controlled by the conserved AAA+ ATPase Pch2. Pch2 further mediates crossover interference, although it is dispensable for crossover formation at normal levels. Thus, interference appears to be superimposed on underlying mechanisms of crossover formation. When recombination-initiating DSBs are reduced, Pch2 is also required for viable spore formation, consistent with further functions in chiasma formation. pch2Delta mutant defects in crossover interference and spore viability at reduced DSB levels are oppositely modulated by temperature, suggesting contributions of two separable pathways to crossover control. Roles of Pch2 in controlling both chromosome axis morphogenesis and crossover placement suggest linkage between these processes. Pch2 is proposed to reorganize chromosome axes into a tiling array of long-range crossover control modules, resulting in chiasma formation at minimum levels and with maximum spacing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Cycle Proteins / metabolism
  • Chromosomes, Fungal / metabolism
  • Crossing Over, Genetic*
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Gene Conversion
  • Meiosis*
  • Nuclear Proteins / metabolism*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / cytology*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / genetics*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / metabolism
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins / metabolism*
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / metabolism


  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • DMC1 protein, S cerevisiae
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • HOP1 protein, S cerevisiae
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Pch2 protein, S cerevisiae
  • RED1 protein, S cerevisiae
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases
  • Zip3 protein, S cerevisiae